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ND taxable sales and purchases up in 2017, but down in larger cities

BISMARCK -- North Dakota’s taxable sales and purchases jumped 3 percent in 2017, an increase that Tax Commissioner Ryan Rauschenberger called “modest.”

But, the Republican said in a news release Wednesday, March 28, it’s a “good indicator” the state’s economy is “doing well and continuing to improve after the numerous decreases we’ve seen reflected in past reports.” Taxable sales and purchases totaled $17.9 billion in calendar year 2017, up from $17.3 billion in 2016.

Taxable sales and purchases reached as high as $28.3 billion in 2014 on the back of a roaring economy driven largely by an oil boom in western North Dakota.

Fargo saw a 5.5 percent drop in taxable sales and purchases in 2017, while Bismarck and Grand Forks saw declines of 3.9 percent and 1.8 percent, respectively. Dickinson saw a 14.7 percent increase, and Williston had a 24.5 percent jump, as Rauschenberger pointed to “increased activity in the oil region.”

John Hageman

John Hageman covers North Dakota politics from the Forum News Service bureau in Bismarck. He attended the University of Minnesota in the Twin Cities, where he studied journalism and political science, and he previously worked at the Grand Forks Herald and Bemidji Pioneer.  

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